Choral short-score?

I couldn’t find anything on this, but I’d be surprised if it hasn’t been asked:

What’s the best way to set up a choral short score (two “solo/section players” per staff)? It strikes me that this should be in the default set of ensembles.

I can set up a score with “Soprano” and “Bass”, and change the names to SA / TB, but is there something more general I’m missing for setting up two “players” per staff?

Actually, there are great things coming — automatic reductions and so — but as far as I have read here, the best way to achieve that for now is to create the solo staves, the choir staves (four staves if needed for parts and a manual reduction on two staves for the full score), and check/uncheck the instruments needed in each layout. I agree this is not as easy, because you need to write twice those choir parts, but it gives the right results. I think it is the workaround, until Dorico’s team implements the reduction function.

Are you saying I need to create a full score on 4 staves and then reduce it in another layout?

I’ll see if 1.0.3 improves anything, when it comes.

I think that is the actual workaround. I do not think the “reduction” thing is going to be available in this first version of Dorico. It probably will be available in a next upgrade, if I understood that well, next year or so…

I’m confused. If Dorico can’t do the reduction itself, then how does creating a full score with 4 staves help?

Do I just change the names and use two Voices? Or is there anything else to be done?


I believe what MarcLarcher is saying is that there are plans to have Dorico combine 2 parts (staves) into one (as in 2 voices) automatically sometime in the future.

Right now, Dorico allows you to input music on 2 separate staves and then create a part layout that shows both staves on one system. I believe you are looking to merge 2 separate staves into one (SA / TB) etc., and we will have to wait until that is implemented.

A possible work-around would be to input all music on separate staves (players), then copy and paste (for example) the Alto music into voice 2 of the Soprano music.

Ah, OK. As long as I’m not missing out any special “2 parts on a stave” functionality.


I can’t help wondering if, when Dorico implements combining two parts onto one staff, they will not also implement a request to be able to explode multiple notes on one staff to several staves (either concurrently or in a subsequent upgrade). Both functions are important to composers and copyists, and I am sure the Dorcio Team has that in mind.

How do you accomplish this…?

I think someone is thinking of Finale, not Dorico, when they say this. One might copy the first voice but would have to manually (re)enter the second voice.

In 1.0.30, the only thing that might help a bit is that we have added a two-staff “choir” instrument with no barline between the staves, which you can use for inputting a short score.

We have already done a good deal of the groundwork required to do the automatic condensation of music for individual players onto a smaller number of staves, but it will be some time before we’re able to return to this area to bring it to its full fruition because people seem to want chord symbols and repeat ending lines first…

Yeah, the squeaky wheel and all that. Unfortunately, mine seems to have become lubricated and isn’t squeaking as loudly as some others!

Gah! I don’t need chord symbols or repeat endings to orchestrate, but to get orchestration from a sketch (explode) done easily, I still have to go to Sibelius. This is a deal breaker for me.

We all have our pet features that we wish the programming team would prioritize over anything others need that we deem less important to our own practice. So yes, doing your production work in Sibelius may be best for you for now, but by not starting to learn Dorico now, you postpone the day when you will be able to move comfortably to Dorico for production work. Dorico will be ready, but you will not be comfortable with its features.